” The relevance of Freud to our time is largely his insight and, to a very considerable extent, his demonstration that the ordinary person is a shriveled, desiccated, fragment of what a person can be” – R.D. Laing
Who am I? There goes one of the most important questions of our lives. Growing up in a situation where social conditioning takes hold of us from the time we are a baby onwards, the question is complicated, and not without benefits and consequences relating to the answer you decide to yield upon being asked such a personal inquiry. This question alone will decide what you have made out of your life, and whether your pursuits have truly been for your benefit or detriment. It is the question that precedes all others, and damns or blesses each choice you have made. Who you are will set you free or relegate you to insignificant dust.
Recently the works of an anti psychiatrist named R.D. Laing -Laing have been favored among the literature I’ve been reading. Laing stresses with an indefatigable persistence that we are in an age where being yourself, your true self, is of the upmost importance. Though it is not necessarily valued by the orthodox. It is critically necessary for the human “soul”. Laing postulates that “ontological security”,or the security of ones own identity of self, is the single most important characteristic a human being can hope to achieve, and that a lack of this type of personal security is running rampant in modern western society, and constraining large sections of our population from contributing to the full extent of their potential. Oftentimes, causing some of our very gifted, to spiral downward, due to lack of ability (understandably) to cope with an environment that refuses to nurture their natural gifts and talents.
In this age full of new technology that should give birth to an endless amount of options and opportunities to fulfill ones own purpose. Those that succeed in this endeavor are extremely rare to find, and that’s no coincidence. It could very well be attributed that nurture, through the medium of parents, and the state, both, are often equally willing to give you a false model of identity to cling onto which will fit into the social constructs and moral frameworks of the society you are born into. Therefore, not nurturing the natural aptitude you hold within to be great at something specifically tailored to that which is already within you, and is eager to come to fruition, with ease, before it is suppressed in the interest of becoming aligned with the social constructs of society.
you are a genius. You were a genius. What if I tell you right now, that you are as smart as the smartest person who ever lived, but you were held back. That your potential was endless, like staring into the universe, there was no telling where it might go, the possibilities were vast and numerous, you could go whichever direction you chose, and it would feel as if it were the only direction, because you would choose right, but choosing the right direction could happen only under the condition you were given the opportunity to steer toward that which suited you best. It’s likely that we all could thrive, but something contrived, and designed, was bent on holding us back.
We are natural beings with infinite potential that have been blindsided before we could defend ourselves. Against our will, we have become a product of our environment. These conditions we face under modern times oddly enough are the most promising in history, yet, at the same time,the least condusive conditions that have ever existed on this planet when it comes to the likelyhood of humanity reaching their natural potential. It’s partly a Huxley prediction in motion. Technology can set us free, but we haven’t utilized it correctly. Instead of using it to become independent of manual agricultural and industrial labor, and then using our new found liberation and freedom to pursue our obviously natural passions which would make us the happiest and most productive, we work in tandom with machines towards the goal of money. MONEY. Can you imagine, all the possibilities, and our goals as a species have been relegated from transcendence from manual labor and slavery towards Capitol gain for basic human needs. A pursuit that society, from birth tells us is completely normal, and very necessary if we want to survive. Laing in his book ” The Politics Of Experience writes
” In a society where competition for the basic cultural goods is a pivot of action, people cannot be taught to love one another ” p.58
or perhaps to cultivate a love for themselves. Which comes from living In harmony with that which is around us and ourselves , which comes from contribution to your own passions and strong points, and contribution to society.
Something weird is happening here and I’ll call bullshit. Society has taken away our ability to provide for ourselves, and has in turn, taken away our autonomy as individuals. Slavery is ” abolished” but in the purest, realist, sense of the the word, that’s what we are! We are all now slaves! Slavesof the lowest sense, because we serve something above us, but remain complacent in this servitude. Aware somewhat that something is missing, but completely inept when it comes to figuring out what exactly it might be. It’s not a far fetched assertion for one to say that a majority of humans in this day and age are living an empty existence, passionless, and full of expedition towards the inert. I can feel the absence. I can feel the empty spot, be it a neurotic sensitivity or not, I can feel that humanity could have ended up in billions of different situations when it came to how we live on this planet, but here we are, and this existence is trouble for us all. I find myself asking, who am I? Think about the effort we all put in to working our life away in this society, into jumping through hoops, into playing a game or contest that we didn’t enter out of free will, but necessity to survive.
“What we call ‘normal’ is a product of repression, denial, splitting, projection, introspection, and other forms of destructive action on experience” – R.D. Laing Politics of Experience pg 24
I’m under the current impression that we probably will not, but that we could do better. I’ll continue this vein of thought in the next entry, until next time.